The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have reported record number increases in STD cases across the United States. This has prompted many local health departments to evaluate the trend of rising STD cases within their own state. Some states are finding a larger increase than others. One of the most shocking reports has come out of Colorado.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment recently released statistics showing a dramatic 97% increase in gonorrhea cases throughout the state of Colorado over the past five years. The majority of cases were reported across five counties including Adams, Arapahoe, Denver, Douglas and Jefferson counties. According to state health officials, gonorrhea rates have increased the most for people under the age of 30.
In a statement by Karen Wendel, director of STD/HIV Prevention and Control for Denver Public Health, there has been an increase in antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea in the Denver metro area. She furthermore called out for all people who are diagnosed with gonorrhea to be treated quickly in order to prevent the spread and evolution of the infection.
Gonorrhea is a very common STD. Symptoms can include an itching or burning sensation in the genitals, particularly during urination. A person could also experience a genital discharge. Patients with gonorrhea infections do not always show signs or symptoms of the infection. For this reason, gonorrhea testing can be the best way to determine if a person is infected with the bacteria.
The CDC encourages all sexually active people between the ages of 13 and 64 to be tested at least once in their lifetime for STDs and HIV. Certain groups are more adversely affected by STDs and HIV. Both the CDC and the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment have stressed the rapid rise of gonorrhea cases among people aged 30 and younger. Many health officials have called for an increase in sexual health education to help make younger people more aware of the risks of sexual activity.
If you believe you may have been exposed to gonorrhea or any other STD you should seek medical care right away. There are many options for testing in Colorado that are both convenient and affordable.